Business magnate Leston Mulli through his MBL Holdings Limited has been invited to set up a tea processing and blending plant in Nigeria, the continent’s populous and largest economy.
This was agreed at Business-to-Business Meeting Nigerian Investments Promotion Commission chief executive officer Aisha Rimi and Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) chairperson Olusegun Obasanjo, former Nigeria President, held with the MBL Holdings managing director on Tuesday in Cairo, Egypt.
Obasanjo said Nigeria is the largest market on the continent and its appetite for agricultural products such as tea is huge.
He said: “Nigeria offers so many opportunities, so are other African countries. But we are open and welcome you to invest and set up various enterprises in our country.
“As for us at IATF, we will support, embrace and assist you with all government machinery so that you set up your factory there.”
Obasanjo further commended Mulli for his interest to expand his businesses into West Africa, adding that this shows the investor was bold and open to new challenges.
He said: “I see him as a fine young man who has vast experience in entrepreneurship, investment and has great business acumen.
“I have read many great stories about his exploits. In Africa, we need such young and future-oriented people. We want people who can continue to invest in their own continent of Africa.”
Mulli in an interview after the meeting said that he was ready to explore the Nigerian market with his tea products.
He said: “This opportunity means we can increase the tea that we grow from local smallholder farmers as the demand for tea in Nigeria is huge.
“Nigeria is the largest market on the continent and for us to be offered such a chance by the Nigerian Investments Promotion Commission it is a blessing.”
He said MBL Holdings has footprints in Zambia, Mozambique, South Africa and Tanzania, among other countries.
IATF2023, Africa’s largest trade and investment fair coordinated by the Afreximbank and African Union Commission, opened on November 9 and closed yesterday November 15 2023.
The fair was aimed at boosting intra-African trade and investments in Africa’s single market of 1.4 billion people created by the African Continental Free Trade Area which had a combined gross domestic product of over $3.5 trillion.
About $43 billion trade and investment deals were expected to be concluded during the trade fair.